Editorial & Opinion | Opinion

07/19/2011 | | Special To The Jewish Week | Opinion

I suspect that nearly every American seminary student of the past generation has heard a variant of this sage advice attributed to the preacher Henry Fosdick:

“Make ‘em laugh, make ‘em cry; 20 minutes, say goodbye.”

07/19/2011 | | Special To The Jewish Week | Opinion

Does Taglit-Birthright Israel have a political agenda?

Questions about Taglit trip’s content have come to the fore, perhaps a natural consequence of it becoming a rite of passage for diaspora young adults, magnified by the intensity of current debate about Israel. The questions are not new, and from the time the first planeload of participants landed in Israel, observers have been looking for the political agenda. But political agendas are more in the mind of the observers than the program.

07/14/2011 | Opinion
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07/13/2011 | | Special To The Jewish Week | Opinion

Among my most vivid childhood memories is sitting on the floor of Congregation Kehilath Jeshurun's majestic sanctuary on the eve of Tisha B'Av, listening to Rabbi Haskel Lookstein preface the reading of the scroll of Eicha with the words, "Tonight is nineteen hundred and …years since the destruction of our holy Temple…" Hundreds of people, gripped by the mix of history and immediacy, would shed tears over a building that went up in flames, each wisp of smoke carrying a memory.